Again with the Inner Squirrel: Baba Ghanoush, Pesto, Bolognese Sauce and Ketchup

Eleven Pints of Ketchup

Eleven Pints of Ketchup

I’ve been busy, Baba Ganoush, Ketchup, Pesto and Bolognese Sauce.  Baba Ghanoush is a Middle Eastern dish I first had when I visited my friend Terrie in Oregon.  Sad to say, I didn’t get her recipe and now she’s gone, but there are many good ones on-line so I have forged ahead.  The eggplants are going gangbusters this year, thanks to the row covers, and they are the base ingredient for this dish.  It also requires tahini (sesame paste), garlic, olive oil, spices and lemon juice.  When we were in Egypt, they served it with chopped vegetables on the side and you mixed them in and ate it like a salad that’s mostly thick dressing.  I like to spread it on a cracker or pita toast and top it with chopped vegetables, as a canape.  First I roasted the eggplants until they collapsed, then scooped the insides into the food processor and added the other ingredients.  I froze the resulting paste in small plastic containers, so I would have some on hand for parties.

Japanese Eggplants, Don't You Love the Color?

Japanese Eggplants, Don’t You Love the Color?

While I had the food processor out, I harvested some of my bumper crop of basil and made Pesto.  Because I am freezing it, I left out the Parmesan cheese as I believe the consistency changes when it’s frozen. This I froze in small cupcake papers which I supported in an egg tray while they froze and then put the lot into a plastic bag for storage, so easy just to take one out for rice, potatoes or pasta this winter.

Once these are frozen they can be popped out and stored in a plastic bag.

Once these are frozen they can be popped out and stored in a plastic bag.

Bolognese Sauce is my “go to” meal and I make a lot, cooking it up by the vat and freezing it in pint containers, enough for the two of us.  I use my variation of the recipe Marcella Hazan gives in “Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking” (a Bible!).  It takes a long time to cook as the flavors develop at a slow burble.  This is so worth the effort for the time it saves me when I have a wonderful meal at my fingertips.

This is now ready, having reduced by half on a low simmer

This is now ready, having reduced by half on a low simmer

The other item on my agenda was Ketchup.  Mine is really Chili Sauce, I think, but we call it Ketchup.  For this I get out my Grandmother’s food grinder (Patent 1897) as the processor doesn’t give me the uniformly fine size I like for the peppers and onions, that make it so delightfully chunky.  I can this in pint jars and got 11 pints, enough for a year, maybe more.  I always feel relieved when I finish the Ketchup and the Bolognese.  It would be very hard to get through the winter without them.

I never met my Grandmoter but I thank her every time I use this grinder

I never met my grandmother but I thank her every time I use this grinder

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: